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Davis

Davis, California

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Men’s basketball preview

Teams: UC Davis vs. UC Riverside

Records: Aggies, 5-9 (0-1); Highlanders, 9-4 (2-0)

Where: The Pavilion

When: Today at 7 p.m.

Radio: KFSG (1690 AM)

Who to watch: Vince Oliver has provided plenty of scoring in his four years at UC Davis, and the last few games have been no different.

The program’s 10th-most prolific scorer put up 19 on Monday at Cal State Northridge and has averaged 16.8 points over his last five games.

Did you know? There are 347 Division I teams in the country, and when it comes to shooting free throws, UC Davis is the best of them all.

The Aggies lead the nation in team free throw percentage with an 81.1 conversion rate.

Preview: UC Santa Barbara knows it. Northridge knows it. Cal Poly absolutely knows it.

Last season, UC Davis and UCR offered little resistance in Big West Conference play. But one-by-one, the Aggies and Highlanders have made sure their conference opponents know it: this year, it’s going to be different.

With nine wins, UCR has already matched its win total from all of last season. After going just 4-12 against Big West teams in 2008, it began this conference season with a 91-57 blowout win over Cal Poly and a 71-69 edging of UC Santa Barbara, the conference’s No. 2 team in the preseason media and coaches poll.

UC Davis made its league statement on Monday, going on the road and giving a major scare to Northridge, the unanimous preseason conference favorite.

The Aggies, who fell twice to the Matadors last season by an average of 27.5 points per game, had the opportunity to force overtime on the game’s final series before succumbing 84-81.

The conference knows UC Davis and UCR are better, and tonight, it’ll know which team is ready to separate itself from the pack.

Michael Gehlken

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